Baulu a Malay Traditional Kuih

The Malay generation in the early days created kuih with three main ingredients.

They use wheat flour, sugar and egg. They named it Kuih Baulu.

Kuih Baulu traditional has two shape
Two shape of traditional Kuih Baulu. The front has shape of buah kana and the back has the shape of buah cermai.

The ingredients are normally available in the kitchen at their house in village.

Kuih Baulu requires simple ingredients but the process to make is delicate with a longer time. 

There is no measurement tool to get the right amount of batter. The measurement is based on a one to one ratio

We can use any size of bowl to measure. The quantity of sugar and egg must be at the same level according to the bowl being used. 

Traditional Preparation of Making Kuih Baulu

We have to start early in the morning in order to finish baking on the same day, otherwise, the mixture of sugar and egg will not be good.

Normally the process starts at about 6 am in morning. This is a long journey to make traditional Kuih Baulu.

It has two-part in the preparation of the ingredients. In the first part, we have to focus on sugar and egg.

Wash the eggs since they come from the farm and thus not clean. 

Break the eggs until a bowl is full. Pour the egg into an earthenware pot. Put aside.

The next step is by using the same bowl, measure the sugar until full. Pour the sugar into the same earthenware pot using the ratio that I have mentioned. 

Whisking the mixture

After eggs and sugar mix together in the earthenware pot,  pour in a few drops of essence of rose to make the batter fragrance. 

The essence of rose makes Kuih Baulu smell good. This is a distinctive smell for Kuih Baulu.

Traditional Kuih Baulu uses a large portion of sugar because it functions as a natural preservative to ensure the Kuih Baulu lasts longer.

Then, used a traditional brass whisk to continuously whisk the egg and sugar until it turned fluffy.

The traditional way of whisking the egg is up and down rather than the anticlockwise manner in making a modern cake.

Whisking in this direction helps to add more air into the batter and increases the fluffiness.

The whisking is a non-stop process and it takes turns between family members until about from morning till evening.

I used to helped my late mother by whisking the egg and sugar as she had to cook for the family in between making Kuih Baulu

Follow by wheat flour 

This is the time we have to measure the flour. There is no exact amount but it is better to prepare extra. 

Fry dry wheat flour in the wok with slow heat for about five minutes. This is to ensure that the flour is light and easy to mix. 

Sift the fried flour for a smooth texture in the batter. Put aside. 

Bake in a self-made oven

To do so, prepare the charcoal and sand. The self-made oven is like the picture drawn. 

Traditional way of cooking Kuih Bahulu
This is traditional way of cooking kuih bahulu without using an oven. The bottom is consist of pot lid, followed by sand, bahulu mould and lastly charcoal.

Put a flat pot lid on the stove. My late mother comfortably using old Thailand CCH Aluminium Indian Cooking Pot as the pot lid.  

This is not difficult to find one or else they can use any old pot lid that is not in use anymore for daily cooking.

Scatter sand on it. Then, put the Kuih Baulu brass mould on the sand to preheat it.

Once the mould is preheated, pandan leave is used to grease cooking oil in the mould. 

The sand is used to make sure only the heat from the stove is being received by the baulu mould rather than direct flame. Another purpose is to ensure that the heat is evenly spread. 

The next step is mixing the fluffy egg batter with the wheat flour. 

Scoop a bowl of fluffy egg batter out and mix in flour. The batter must be adjusted accordingly until it becomes fluffy and thick.  

Spoon the batter and drop into a hot mould. The amount should be three-quarters of the baulu tray. 

Close the baulu mould using its own lid covered with hot charcoal, which helped speed up the cooking process.

The baulu has to be checked from time to time. It can burn quickly so one has to look after the hot mould. 

One of the classic shapes of baulu mould is inspired by buah cermai and buah kana being cut in half.

Once cooked to perfection, the baulu were later than pick up with a toothpick.

The texture of traditional baulu is soft inside and crusty outside.  

Repeat the process until the batter finishes. The baking usually finished late night.

The Modern way of making Kuih Baulu

The measurement ratio remains the same as classic traditional baulu as well as fry the wheat flour. Beat the mixture and egg with the cake mixer. 

I maintain the measurement as per the traditional ratio. The ingredients used remain unchanged. 

Instead of whisking the egg using a traditional brass whisk, I beat the egg and sugar using a cake mixer and baked in the oven.

Baking kuih baulu by preheating the oven. Heat the greased baulu mould in the middle rack of the oven for one minute until warm, then remove.

Using a spoon, drop the baulu mixture into each individual mould until three-quarters full.

Place mould in the oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until baulu is lightly browned.

Remove mould from the oven, use a toothpick to poke into the cake and gently lift each kuih baulu out. Leave it to cool.

Grease the mould again and reheat for one minute. Repeat the steps until all the mixture is used up.

Commercial Kuih Baulu

Nowadays, kuih baulu is produced by the food industry in large numbers so that we can have it throughout the year.

Sometimes, I bought the commercial Kuih Baulu. It seems there is no fragrance of the rose essence.

The Baulu is neither soft inside or crusty outside.

However, they added variety to the Kuih Baulu by introducing pandan, chocolate and chocolate rice flavour.

Being said, the taste is not the same as traditional baulu and the texture is spongy.

The commercial baulu sell in supermarket, hypermarket, bakery and grocery shop. 

Life lessons cooking Kuih Baulu have taught

1. Reminder of Time

When the making of Kuih Baulu begins, it has a deep meaning that the celebration of Hari Raya Aidilfitri nearer. 

This automatically changes our mood. 

It is a joyous moment in the air even though we have a few more days to fast in Ramadan.

Kuih Baulu is usually served to guests that visit the house on the first day of Hari Raya Aidilfitri. 

In Malay culture, Kuih Baulu is also famous during weddings. 

It is usually included in the goodie bag as a door gift for the guests of the reception. 

2. The meaning of making Kuih Baulu

In preparing Kuih Baulu we have to follow the rules in order for it to bake well and be tasty.

This is because only three ingredients are used. That is why they have to create the rules to make it perfect.

Furthermore, they make it not for sale instead to serve their children, relatives and friends in Hari Raya celebration.

Thus, even though making Kuih Baulu take longer time but is worthy.

But today, the family bonding and togetherness had gone to be replaced with easily available kuih in the market.

The modern oven and mixer had denied the Kuih Baulu taste better with the traditional procedure. 

3. Preparation requires patience

The older generation passed their skills and techniques to their children in order to make Kuih Bahulu soft inside but crusty outside.

One of the traits that they instill in their children is patience and perseverance as it is one of the kuih that consumes most of the day to prepare it. 

Conclusion

Nowadays Kuih Bahulu is available throughout the year as it is being sold in the grocery store, bakery and supermarket.

The Kuih Baulu is being commercialised because Malaysian love to eat Kuih Bahulu anytime. 

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